I first traveled to Brazil some 13 years ago on a business study trip. At that time the Brazilian cellular industry was taking off. We observed a couple of the interesting dynamics that contrasted the Brazilian experience with that of North America. One was that people were bypassing landlines altogether, rather investing in a cellular phone as their only and exclusive phone number. Two, for people who couldn’t afford an actual cellular phone, they could purchase a “virtual” number which provided them a phone number and voice mail. The voice mail could be accessed via a pay phone and presumably any message could be returned via this manner as well. In effect, this represented a low-cost, virtual answering service. (I don’t expect this type of service exists much anymore).
November 3, 2008
The most interesting service we learned about at this time was a service that would call you on your cell phone at a pre-arranged time. It was a way for Brazilians who could afford a cell phone back then to look important in front of friends, business colleagues and dates. Nothing like having to interrupt an in-person conversation to take a very important call. Of course there was no one on the other line.
With the prevalence of cellular phones in much of the world today, the last thing most people need is their cell phone to ring in order to impress. (Often, it has the opposite effect). However there are times when you’d like to extract yourself from an awkward situation. That’s were FakeCalls app for the iPhone comes in. It mimics the phone call receiving process on the iPhone. Load up the app, set the time you’d like to receive a call and after that amount of time passes . . . voila, your phone starts ringing and vibrating indicating an incoming call. See VentureBeat’s coverage of FakeCalls.
Best way to get out of mind-numbing business meetings, family dinners or blind dates that have gone awry!